’s top executive says the air framer needs to be cautious in managing its order book in the Asia-Pacific, but says he sees no signs of a crisis in the critical aircraft market.
“The market is still very bullish, but you’re starting to see emerging winners and losers” among airlines, Airbus President and CEO Fabrice Bregier told Aviation Week Tuesday in an interview at the Farnborough Air Show. “So that means we have to have an order book management that is a bit tighter.”
Late last month, Bank of America Merrill Lynch transportation analyst Paul Dewberry lowered his earnings outlook for five long-haul Asian carriers by an average of 30%, citing “overcapacity caused by record numbers of new widebodies entering the market over the next three years.”
Bregier concedes the Asia-Pacific market has “more challenges than before,” particularly with struggling low-cost carriers. But he says that may simply be a sign that the market is maturing, and reiterated his confidence in its long-term growth prospects. He also expressed faith in Airbus’s ability to manage its backlog by overbooking orders so it is not waylaid by a sudden wave of cancellations.
“We’ve been doing that forever,” he says, noting that Airbus made it through the 2008-09 global financial meltdown virtually unscathed. “This is not a crisis at all. There is growth.”